THE Education Ministry has endorsed the Basic Employment Skills Training program (BEST) implemented at fifth form level last year.
The statement was made by Minister Filipe Bole during his address at the FNU apprentice graduation on Friday.
He said another 62 schools would take up the BEST program this year. "This program will be facilitated by the National Training Productivity Centre and is based on industry standards developed via the national qualifications framework," Mr Bole said.
"I believe that if our children are exposed to Technical Vocational Education Training (TVET) earlier on in life, they will realise its importance and value for their future.
"On a macro level, the mainstreaming of TVET has been recognised as an effective way of increasing the national skills level and furthermore contributing towards individuals becoming entrepreneurs."
He said the government was committed to raising the image of technical vocational education training and incorporating it into mainstream education.
Mr Bole said skills training was vitally important for economic development in any country.
"I firmly believe the availability of a labour force that has the appropriate skills is a powerful incentive for attracting prospective investors to our shores," he said.
"There are positive indications that significant volumes of investment will take place in the near future in Fiji, especially in the hospitality, mining and manufacturing industries."